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Last Updated: Tuesday, 13 March 2007, 16:22 GMT
Cut in MRSA bug cases in the East
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The NHS in the East of England has welcomed a 21% cut in the number of MRSA super bug cases compared to last year, says a new report.

The number of MRSA blood infections dropped by 118 cases in the period April 2006 to January 2007 compared to the same period last year.

But the East of England Strategic Health Authority (SHA) report says 11 trusts exceeded their monthly targets.

They include hospitals in Ipswich, West Herts and King's Lynn.

The report, to the SHA's board meeting on 15 March, says that in January there were 47 recorded MRSA infections compared to the target of 32 cases.

Three hospitals - Hinchingbrooke, Peterborough and Stamford and the James Paget, Norfolk - had no cases in January.

'Clinical priority'

Four hospitals - Cambridge University Hospitals, Norfolk and Norwich University, Papworth and Southend - were on or below their monthly limit.

But 11 health trust exceeded their targets with Ipswich Hospital, East and North Hertfordshire, West Hertfordshire, Queen Elizabeth Hospital in King's Lynn being singled out by the SHA report.

Gwyneth Wilson, deputy chief executive and chief nurse at the Queen Elizabeth Hospital, said that while the four cases reported in January was above target, the hospital has seen a dramatic drop in the number of MRSA cases.

The number of MRSA blood infections in 2003/4 was 45, dropping to 44 the following year, 17 in 2005/6 and five in the first six months of 2006/7.

Between April 2006 to January 2007 there were 13 cases, which is well below the target of 22 cases.

A spokeswoman for Ipswich Hospital said: "Reducing both the number of MRSA transmissions and the number of infections is our number one top clinical priority.

"We are looking at all the other trusts in the region and country to see if we can learn from them."

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